San Francisco to charge wireless carriers a “fee” to locate on light poles.Posted November 6, 2014 by admin
As if we needed more proof that the ability deliver content is the most important thing in wireless, San Francisco Public Utilities Commission plans to charge for wireless antennas for mobile networks on the 16,800 owned street poles. The reason why they can charge a larger fee is that SF is known to be very difficult, if not impossible to get any tower installed within the city. Small cells on the light pole will command a minimum of $4,000 per year with a 4% increase per year.
Here is the thing, wireless carriers need to be close to the population. Street lights are the ideal spot for this same reason. Utility companies are starting to be more of “networks location providers”, not just for light and power but for fiber and wireless equipment as well. Currently the wireless companies have been locating on very expensive rooftop space and they are looking for an alternatives. The distributed antennae systems are the way to accomplish this.
So what does this mean to the current rooftop wireless lease owners in SF? There is a very real possibility that you may see changes to the current equipment on the roof. With the ability to scale and distribute more cell sites a crossed the city don’t be surprised if the carriers start to at a minimum, ask for a rent reduction.